Today, transport accounts for a fifth of global energy demand and a quarter of energy-related CO2 emissions . The effects of pollution from transport are especially significant in cities.
According to the World Health Organisation, around 91% of the world’s population is breathing toxic air, causing 4,2 million premature deaths every year .
Electric mobility is widely seen as a way to improve air quality and meet climate goals. With electrification, come great opportunities to enhance the flexibility, efficiency and environmental performance of almost any mobility application or system, at sea or on land.
Cities are key for electrifying transport
Cities have the potential to be a key driver for electrifying transport. But they can only be smart when all the systems are truly integrated. To achieve this, societies need to embrace the transport revolution in two ways.
Set ambitious targets
Cities need to set ambitious new targets to become carbon-neutral faster and create incentives for the transition to electric transport.
Electrify your bus fleet … one bus at a time
Electric buses are an attractive option when cities are pushing for cleaner air. This works best when the city electrifies one bus line to develop a blueprint for implementation and gradually renews the bus fleet.
It's all about being smart
Electrification alone is not sufficient to put the world on track to meet climate goals. It requires a more comprehensive strategy, taking in the whole of the energy system. We need to rethink how buildings are integrated and connected and how we collaborate. If cities want to meet their ambitious carbon-neutral targets and take advantage of an electrified urban transport fleet, they need to establish intelligent two-way connections for water, heating, cooling and electricity. Smart cities arise from smart thinking. But, for now, cities can start electrifying their urban transport system, one bus at a time.
1 International Energy Agency (iea) World Energy Outlook (2018) https://webstore.iea.org/world-energy-outlook-2018
2 World Health Organisation. https://www.who.int/airpollution/ambient/en/